The role of a teacher has changed over the years. Very few people realize how many additional tasks have been added to the role of a classroom teacher. Many schools continue to shift more administrave work onto their teachers. Also, many parents expect teachers to handle roles that were previously handled in homes or outside of the classroom.
Classrooms roster characterics have also made the job more challenging. Now, many classrooms have students that range from years below grade level or years above grade level. How can one teacher meet the differing academic needs of each of their students at the same time?
While teachers are now busier than ever, most schools do not have sufficient funding to add paraprofessional staff to every classroom. Technology can help by offering students an opportunity to practice newly learned concepts until they attain proficiency. Unfortunately, many of the students that spend the majority of their time learning from automated programs frequently fail to develop the social and emotional skills necessary for success in future careers and success in life. These important skills are typically obtained by students when they learn from teachers, paraprofessionals, and school volunteers. Kids love our large stuffed animals that help them learn to read, but we also emphasize the important role of teachers.
Although we offer a wide range of educational technology, we believe that technology should be used to empower teachers, not replace the teachers. We also believe in the power of highly trained volunteers to help teachers. Our newest feature provides you with the ability to connect highly trained volunteers to classrooms needing help. For example, both the student and the highly trained volunteer can click on a link on their computers. Instantly, the same book and reading materials appear on both of their computer screens. They also communicate through their microphones and speakers. The volunteers follow a pre-approved lesson plan along with optional custom requests from the teacher.
All of the on-line student/tutor sessions are automatically recorded for review by principals, reading specialists, district administrators and other quality control options. In addition, many of the volunteers are retired teachers, pre-service teachers under the supervision of a college professor, and other highly skilled tutors/mentors.
We have also establish programs for corporate volunteers. Most large corporations encourage their employees to volunteer at schools. They also donate funds to the schools where their employees volunteer. ExxonMobil donates $25 per volunteer hour. Intel provides $10 per hour. Other companies havae donation rates within that range. Students get individual academic help, access to tutors/mentors from a wide range of careers, and 21st century skills of working remotely with teams of people from all across the nation.
We also believe that students gain significant career knowledge and benefits from working with volunteers from a wide range of expanding professions, such as STEM, finance, healthcare, etc.
Assisting teachers with grants and funding opportunities is another focus area. We also analyze many thousands of grant awards from across the country to understand what teachers in similar districts are requesting for their classrooms. This allows us to collaborate with teachers that are already using those resources to obtain the maximum benefits from those resources.